Even though New Mexico can be perceived as quite liberal when many issues are concerned, marijuana still isn’t decriminalized there. This means you can’t use weed for recreational purposes.
On the other hand, patients who suffer from certain medical conditions can use it under strict conditions. Hopefully, this article will show you how you can benefit from medicinal use of marijuana in the state of New Mexico.
How It All Began
In 2007, Senate Bill 238 was approved by both houses, and when the governor signed it into law all patients that required marijuana for the treatment of certain medical conditions were no longer subject to criminals presecution.
This created a regulated system which could help alleviate the symptoms commonly triggered by various sorts of debilitating medical conditions. The system is referred to as the Medical Cannabis Program.
It allows people to use marijuana for medicinal purposes, as a natural type of treatment. The state of New Mexico currently recognizes twenty different medical conditions that can be treated with medical marijuana.
The list of these medical conditions includes: amyotrophic lateral sclerosis or ALS, ulcerative colitis, all different types of cancer, spasmodic torticollis or cervical dystonia, Crohn’s disease, cachexia, severe anorexia, epilepsy, severe chronic pain, glaucoma, post-traumatic stress disorder, hepatitis C infections, Parkinson’s disease, HIV/AIDS, painful peripheral neuropathy, Huntington’s disease, damage to the nerves surrounding the spinal cord, hospice care, multiple sclerosis, inclusion body myositis, and inflammatory autoimmune-mediated arthritis.
It’s good to know that if you suffer from a medical condition that is not included on the list, you can file a petition with the state Medical Cannabis Advisory Board for consideration and approval.
How to Sign Up for a Medical Marijuana Card?
In the state of New Mexico, medical marijuana is legal only if you have a medical marijuana card. To obtain one, you’ll have to go through a lot of paperwork, so let’s get started with that.
First of all, you must be a New Mexico resident with an identification card, passport, or any other official type of photo ID that has your picture on it, so that you can prove your residency.
You need to request all your medical records from your primary care physician. These medical records must contain information on your debilitating medical condition that requires medical marijuana treatment.
Also, these records need to include a diagnosis from your physician that confirms you actually suffer from the said debilitating medical condition.
Depending on your medical condition, you might also need additional paperwork. Those who apply under chronic pain need to obtain a second certification from a pain specialist.
If you apply under post-traumatic stress disorder, you will need to supply a diagnosis from a psychiatrist.
Patients who suffer from glaucoma need to include a diagnosis from an ophthalmologist for the medical records. The same goes for those who suffer from inflammatory autoimmune-mediated arthritis, only that the diagnosis has to come from a rheumatologist.
When you’re through with all the certifications, you need to register yourself with the New Mexico Department of Health to get hold of your medical card.
How to Purchase Marijuana in New Mexico?
Once you receive your cannabis card, you are eligible to purchase marijuana for medical use from one of the state’s licensed non-profit producers or LNPPs. Along with your card you will be given a list of such producers. You can buy weed at an LNPP located anywhere in the state.
If you don’t want to purchase from a licensed non-profit producers directly, you may do so through a caregiver of your choice. To become a caregiver one must be enrolled in the Medical Cannabis Program and undergo a thorough federal background check.
You are allowed to purchase six pounds of marijuana for medical purposes over a period of three months. If that doesn’t fulfill the needs for your treatment, your physician must request the limit to be raised by submitting a letter to the Department of Health.
The state of New Mexico provides you with another option: you can grow your own marijuana for medical purposes. In order to do so you first need to get a hold of a personal production license. You can’t get one unless you provide a detailed description of your growing area and prove your ability to secure that same area.
The license must be renewed once a year and it gives you the opportunity to grow up to 16 plants at the same time. Out of those 16, you are only allowed to have 4 mature plants at any one time, while the other 12 must remain seedlings.
In New Mexico, medical marijuana is legal but the possession and public use of it still isn’t. Make sure you always consume your medical marijuana in the privacy of your own residence, as public consumption of any type is illegal and could get you arrested.
This website contains very good information. Legal information for medical users is important with the rules being different across the states.
Hi Bruce, We decided to tackle information for each state separately because of the very point you raise in that each state has different rules and levels of legalization. The articles we have created for each state are meant to be jumping off points to further information via the links in the post. The main and most important link is to norml.org which is the main lobby organization for cannabis legalization in D.C. Their site has very concise and useful information on the law for medical and recreational users in each state of the U.S. and is a great reference/information tool. I am glad you have found the posts useful. Cheers!